Kirkus Reviews QR Code
POPPY AND ERETH by Avi

POPPY AND ERETH

By Avi (Author) , Brian Floca (Illustrator)

Age Range: 10 - 12

Pub Date: May 1st, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-06-111969-9
Publisher: HarperCollins

Avi bills this as the final episode in the series and burns down Dimwood Forest to underscore the claim—but since all but one of the characters survive at the end, there’s no reason to believe him. When the elderly Poppy is carried away by a young bat, her gruff friend, Ereth the porcupine, thinks her dead and organizes a funeral. While she’s making friends with the bats in their distant cave and then trying to find her way back home, a lightning strike touches off a blaze in dry Dimwood. Cutting back and forth in short chapters from Poppy to the grieving Ereth to runty but intrepid Spruce, one of Poppy’s many grandchildren, the author weaves several plotlines together in time for the smoky, exciting climax. There are no villains here to crank up the melodrama, but several cliffhangers, quick pacing and a lively cast more than compensate. Several figures from previous adventures pass in review, either in flesh or in Poppy and Ereth’s memories, but that’s not enough to create any convincing sense of closure. There’s life in the old series yet. (Fantasy. 10-12)